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National Security

Hank (Steve Zahn) and his partner are called when an alarm triggers in a warehouse, and is then cancelled. Hank's partner insists on still checking it out, and he is right.

Unfortunately during the robbery at the warehouse, Hank's partner is killed and Hank cannot do a thing about it. All he has is a description of the getaway vehicle, and a tattoo.

Earl (Martin Lawrence) is in the police academy, and not doing so well. Though he may have the skills to be a police officer, he has a problem with authority, especially if authority is white. Naturally, he gets kicked out of Police Academy. There may not even be a place for him in Police Academy 7.

When Earl tries to break into his own car, Hank stops him for questioning, and the situation gets out of hand because of Earl's loudmouth remarks. Eventually the situation turns ugly, and Hank loses his job as an LAPD officer thanks to unbelievable racial sensitivity. (In a wacky turn of events, his trying to keep a bee away from the allergic Earl gets caught on tape looking like he's giving Earl a beatdown. Wacky.)

When he gets out he has no choice but to work as a security guard. While doing that, he still follows up on the murder of his partner. Surprisingly (really), Earl also works for the same security company,and the two stumble onto a plot to steal the next big breakthrough in science and technology. Now they are partnered to solve this crime without the police's help but with their personal issues perfectly intact.

Depending how much you can tolerate Martin Lawrence's over the top racism and attitude is how much you will probably tolerate the jokes in this movie. The jokes are pretty much reduced to racist remarks. Although they may be funny at times, make sure you laugh at the right

Poor Steve Zahn. He is probably the best thing that happens in this movie, playing a frustrated man just getting the short end of the stick left and right. It's almost like a classic Tom and Jerry cartoon: you know Jerry is the troublemaker, but you end up against Tom anyway. No exception here. Zahn's facial expressions are hilarious to watch, and his attitude of "Why me?" is well done. Kudos to him for putting up with this nonsense of a plot.

Tiresomely, most of the action gets shot in slow motion, and apparently with blue screen shots. As a result, most of these slow motion shots you can really tell what's fake, and you have time to actually see who the stunt double is. But are they impressive? Action scenes are fillers in this film, plain and simple, and sometimes take way too long to finish. Just get to the next funny dialogue, please. Isn't there any?

While Lawrence plays lightheartedly with the black-white issues, it comes off as forced and more angry than funny. If the roles were reversed, this movie would get much harsher reviews from more PC advocates.

So forget the fact that Martin Lawrence is a crazy psychopathic racist in this movie, deservingly getting kicked out of the academy. And then you have to also forget that this plot is weak and thin, and finally forget that the only character arc here for a black man to learn racial tolerance. Then maybe this movie could have the potential of being much much better. Maybe..

For all you comic book fans, this really plays out like Bad Boys 0. Which reminds me that we're going to get number 2 this summer.

What's It Worth? $3.50

Mish'al Samman

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